Medicare Debate Reverberates In House And Senate Races

Thompson at the 2004 HealthierUS summit

Thompson at the 2004 HealthierUS summit (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Topics: Medicare, Politics, States, Health Reform

Aug 15, 2012

The New York Times reports that with Mitt Romney‘s selection of House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan to be his running mate, the fight to control Congress may face a new twist.

The New York Times: Two-Way Jabs On Medicare Recast Races For Congress
The fight over Medicare, the popular federal health care program for older Americans, is rapidly intensifying in House and Senate races around the nation after the selection of Representative Paul D. Ryan as the Republican vice-presidential candidate. Congressional Democrats and some analysts say that development could transform the fight for control of Congress, given his role as the author of a House-approved budget plan that would reshape Medicare (Hulse, 8/14).

In other news, Tommy Thompson wins a GOP Senate primary in Wisconsin, and the ad wars heat up in the Missouri Senate race —

The New York Times’ The Caucus: Negative Ad, A First For Akin, Goes Up In The Missouri Senate Race
After an ad released by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee criticized his positions on Social Security and Medicare, Representative Todd Akin is responding with an ad of his own that calls the attacks leveled on behalf of his opponent, Sen. Claire McCaskill, “misleading, deceptive, false.” The 30-second spot is the first negative ad released by Mr. Akin, who made a point of running only positive ads during the Republican primary race (Berg, 8/14).

Politico: Tommy Thompson Wins Wisconsin Senate Nod
Wisconsin Republicans bucked tea party forces to pick 70-year-old former Gov. Tommy Thompson, a pillar of the GOP establishment, as their Senate standard-bearer Tuesday in a contest that could determine control of the upper chamber. Thompson, who served four terms as governor, beat back a pair of well-funded, stubborn challengers in a closely contested race, setting up a marquee match-up with liberal Democratic Rep. Tammy Baldwin this fall. The ex-governor and former secretary of Health and Human Services finished ahead of hedge fund manager Eric Hovde, 34 percent to 31 percent. Former Rep. Mark Neumann was far behind at 23 percent. State Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald won 12 percent of the vote. … The attacks on issues such as Thompson’s past support for a health care mandate damaged him, but the anti-Thompson vote was splintered among his three credible challengers (Catanese, 8/15).

This is part of Kaiser Health News’ Daily Report – a summary of health policy coverage from more than 300 news organizations. The full summary of the day’s news can be found here and you can sign up for e-mail subscriptions to the Daily Report here. In addition, our staff of reporters and correspondents file original stories each day, which you can find on our home page.


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